Rating: 2.5 stars out of 5
Project Director Zane Caldwell has a major problem-a charming, go-getter hotshot from Chicago named Ford Trionni, recently hired at Widdley Finch Inc., a Connecticut-based marketing research company. The man, whom the secretarial pool nicknamed “The Italian Stallion” based on his stunning good looks and sexual aura, has also gained the reputation of a superstar in the industry due to his innovative analytical techniques. The trouble is, the man wears his accolades like a badge on his lapel, strutting around the office like a peacock.
Ford’s self-centered, lofty attitude drives Zane to utter distraction. Even worse, the man seems to know it, intentionally using his sizzling sex appeal to tie Zane’s patience and libido into knots while giving off mixed messages of mutual attraction. But from what Zane can tell, Ford’s already involved in an intense relationship with someone else, and the last thing Zane wants is to fall for a guy who not only treats him like a peon instead of an equal, but intends to make him a side dish to his current love affair.
Yet as he works with Ford on an important account, Zane begins to realize there’s more to Ford than the man lets on, and all may not be what it seems. As the heat between them builds into an inferno despite their contrary work relationship, Zane vows to get to the bottom of Ford’s confusing behavior once and for all. Is the man playing games with Zane’s job and his heart, or is there a chance they might actually discover they’re the perfect partners?
And the Survey Says… didn’t live up to its potential. The setup in the opening scene is intriguing, but the language, even when Zane is musing about Ford, pulls the reader out of the story. And this continues all the way through the book. The choice of words and descriptors were awkward, making the dirty talk and sex scenes lackluster.
I liked Zane and Ford, individually and as a couple. The settings and characterizations were well-written, but the plot seems to lose steam early on, and it’s entirely based on miscommunication. If they had talked for five minutes when they started working together, the whole thing would have been solved.
The book has interesting moments and some cute banter. Also, the contention point between the main characters added a degree of empathy and amusement into the story. That particular subplot was very well written; as well as Ford’s and Zane’s friendship.
Overall, I expected more from this story since it is the second edition. Most of the prose challenges could have been re-worked to create a well-rounded story. Unfortunately, the opportunity was missed.
The cover has a good composition but seems a bit generic. The two models are nothing like what I imagined Zane and Ford to be.
ebook, 151 pages
Published: July 16, 2016, JMS Books
Edition Language: English